SASC proposes folding DoD CIO into DCMO

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The Senate committee overseeing the Defense Department says the position of departmental chief information officer should be folded into the duties of the deputy chief management officer and the position of the DCMO elevated in authority to the level of undersecretary of defense.

The Senate Armed Services Committee voted 23-3 on June 14 to report its version of the fiscal 2014 national defense authorization act (S. 1197), detailing its reorganizational intent in a newly released legislative report (.pdf).

In it, the committee says that the position of DoD CIO has diminished in authority since the Pentagon disestablished the position of assistant secretary of defense for networks and information integration, formally abolishing it in January 2012. Until then, the DoD CIO was the ASD(NII), the latter being a Senate-confirmed position whereas DoD CIO is a politically appointed one.

The position of ASD(NII) itself was the result of the 2003 disestablishment of the position of ASD command, control, communications and intelligence, which led to some CIO duties being transferred to the undersecretary of defense for intelligence, such as supervision over the National Security Agency's Information Assurance Directorate, the report says, "despite the fact that the CIO, not the USD(I), is responsible for information systems security, which is the mission of the IAD."

The committee also says statutorily assigned responsibilities of the DCMO--a position created by the fiscal 2008 national defense authorization act--have been performed in fact by the CIO, "which further diluted the clout of the CIO."

Its proposal is to designate an undersecretary of defense for management as the DoD CIO and transfer authority over the NSA IAD to it.

That would "unify roles and functions traditionally performed by the CIO and strengthen the office by making it a Senate-confirmed position again, but without creating an additional position," the report says.

For more:
- go to the THOMAS page for S. 1197
- download the legislative report; the DoD CIO language is in Sec. 901 (.pdf)

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